Choosing the right electricity retailer & plan is an essential first step in keeping power bills under control. For Australia’s nearly 2 million solar households, the question is arguably even more important because in most states different retailers offer different solar feed-in tariff rates. Unfortunately, higher feed-in tariff rates are sometimes used as ‘bait’ to lure in solar customers into plans that are on the whole more costly for the customer due to higher charges elsewhere.
To help demystify electricity pricing, electricity comparison website WATTever have launched a service that allows users to keep on top of the ever-changing retail market. The program, called Deal Tracker, automatically notifies subscribers if its algorithm determines that there is a cheaper electricity plan that has become available in their area.
WATTever keep a continually updated database of all of Australia’s electricity prices – from dozens of electricity retailers, each of which may have any number of retail plans. The company’s comparator engine (which is 100% free to use) collates this massive amount of data, allowing users to enter their current bill details to get a customised estimate for every plan on the market in a list that can be easily sorted and filtered. It also allows users to estimate potential savings that could be achieved by installing a solar power system.
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When someone signs up for Deal Tracker, they will be alerted on a monthly or quarterly basis (depending on customer preference) if a new plan has come onto the market that beats their current rates by at least a certain amount, determined by the customer (e.g. $50 per year). WATTever estimates that residential customers who subscribe to the service (for a $29 annual fee) will save between $100-$500 per year. Deal Tracker is also available for small and large businesses.
How Deal Tracker works. (Click to enlarge.)
WATTever founder David Hiley says that the company introduced Deal Tracker to remove the pain and uncertainty of the process of hunting for a better plan.
“Let’s be honest: ‘Shopping’ for electricity sucks. It’s difficult to compare properly and it often feels like there’s no one on your side – many so-called comparison services only compare some of the retailers and the limited number of plans they earn commission on,” he said.
“This is all compounded with the fact that it all keeps changing. Prices go up, benefit periods expire and discounts disappear. In short, deals that were once good turn bad, which means you’ve constantly got to be on your toes to make sure you’re on the best plan.
“Deal Tracker takes the guesswork – not to mention the time and effort – out of electricity shopping.”
If you’re interested, you can learn more at WATTever.com.au.
© 2017 Solar Choice Pty Ltd
Full disclosure: Solar Choice has a commercial agreement with WATTever related to traffic we send to their site, so this is kind of advertising for them. That being said, the only reason we’ve partnered up with them in the first place is that they offer a fantastic service (their comparison engine is better than the government’s EnergyMadeEasy site) and don’t play favourites with electricity retailers. Like us, they are passionate (or nerdy) about what they do, and they do it well so we are happy to recommend them to our customers regardless.